This post is sponsored by Barilla.
How’s your December going? Are you super-organised and have all your holiday shopping and meal planning under control? Or are you just keeping your head above water like, ahem, *some people* ? Either way, today’s recipe will speak to you. If you’re a planner, this dish can be made ahead of time and either baked fresh (you could pre-cook everything and just add the eggs when you’re ready to bake) or reheated. If you’re not a planner, this dish uses pantry and fridge staples and comes together in a flash, baking away as you get to that December “to do” list.
You might remember in a previous post, I spoke about this being the season where, because of the excess in all other areas of life, I try to work my way through my pantry and often I’ve got half boxes of pasta needing to be used up. This recipe is another way to use up either leftover dry or cooked pasta and it’s the perfect dish to add to your holiday brunch table (though it works really well for a light lunch or dinner paired with a green salad). I’ve used penne rigate in this dish because it’s what I had on hand in the right quantity, but other varieties (macaroni, rotini) would work too. This is also extremely customisable according to what you have on hand – I’ve made three different variations on this recipe in the past month as, on a Sunday evening, I’ve discovered I have “bits and pieces” needing to be used up and lunches to prepare for the week – this is the perfect vehicle for that one lone pepper, those few strips of bacon, that one lonely onion. Make it plain or fancy it up – the possibilities are endless…
Breakfast pasta bake (frittata)
Easy baked pasta frittata - perfect for weekend brunch or weekday lunch or dinner.
- 2 cups dry Barilla Penne Rigate (250 g dry, approx 5 cups cooked pasta)
- 8 strips bacon, roughly chopped
- 1 medium onion (approx 150 g), diced
- 1 medium bell pepper (approx 200g), diced
- 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes (approx 200g), halved
- 10 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup (120 g) grated cheddar cheese plus 1/4 cup (30 g) for topping
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- fresh chives, for garnish
Preheat oven to 375˚F. Lightly grease a large casserole dish (mine was 9-inch/ 23 cm)
Cook the pasta according to the directions on the packaging. Drain and cover.
While the pasta is cooking, cook the bacon in a pan over medium heat for about 3 minutes.
Add the onion and pepper and saute until the onion is just starting to soften but not brown.
Toss the tomatoes in the pan briefly then add this mix to the pasta.
Stir to distribute the bacon, onions, peppers and tomatoes evenly through the pasta.
Mix the cheese through the pasta.
Pour the pasta into the casserole dish and use your hands to make sure the add-ins are evenly distributed.
Season the eggs with a couple of pinches of salt and some freshly ground pepper.
Pour the eggs over the pasta and shake the dish a little to make sure the egg is evenly distributed.
Top with remaining cheese.
Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling and melted. Garnish with fresh chives and serve warm.
Leftovers can be reheated in a microwave or low oven.
Planning ahead? You could pre-cook the pasta, bacon, onions, peppers and tomatoes and just add the eggs when you're ready to bake.
What about you – what’s your make-ahead dish for the holidays?
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Barilla but all opinions are my own. I only write about and recommend products I use and love.
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